The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga held its annual spring Blue and Gold Preview Day on Saturday, April 1, to show prospective students and their families the uniqueness of UTC.
In charge of putting Preview Day together, Director of New Student and Family Programs Carrie Sherbesman has worked at UTC for nearly 20 years. While she loves planning events and recruiting new students, she finds watching the events come together and seeing new faces come to campus to be the most rewarding.
“I love when we see students come back for a second visit; that’s always exciting,” Sherbesman said. “If they’re coming back just to view housing, or they have just a few questions for a department and they’ve been here before, I love that because that means they’re truly interested.”
With around 465 students in attendance for the event—plus parents and other family members—2023’s spring preview was the largest the campus has ever had. As prospective students took tours of campus and talked to department heads, Preview Day excelled in demonstrating what UTC has to offer.
“When you think of universities, sometimes you can come up with one thing that makes them special,” Sherbesman said. “Whether it’s the football program, whether ’”””” ’it’s housing, here at UTC we have so many small things that make us great.”
From the Disability Resource Center’s consistent support and accommodations to the ARC’s unique selection of activities, Sherbesman explained that behind every organization and department that sets UTC apart, there are always people willing to work together and lend a helping hand.
“I think one of the best things on this campus is the people,” Sherbesman said. “Whether that’s staff, faculty or students, this event brings them all together with one central theme that we think UTC is the best choice for post-secondary education in Tennessee and across the region.”
Demonstrating the community at UTC, Preview Day’s packed schedule provided visitors with resources from student organizations, student services and academic departments with the help of many faculty members and student volunteers.
Running a booth for Student Government Association, senior theatre major and SGA marketing director Isaiah Owens said he was originally drawn to UTC for its combination of small campus charm with big city energy.
Coming from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and learning about all the opportunities to get involved at UTC, Owens never hesitated to network and expand his creative skills.
“In my art experience, in my craft, I want to create unique and individual expression,” Owens said, “and the best way to do that is by talking to and influencing the lives of others.
“It’s a good directive and it helps push forward my generosity as an artist.”
From the start of his college career, Owens said he knew he wanted to be a leader. UTC helped him grow into the one he is today.
“I’ve been an orientation leader for four years now and I just love talking to all the new students,” Owens said. “There are so many identities and individuals with such unique passions and efforts that create this bond to feel connected by.”